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Epistemology & Philosophy of Science

Volume 57, Issue 1, 2020

Olga B. Koshovets, Igor E. Frolov
Pages 20-31

Brave New World
On Science Transformation Into Technoscience

The article focuses on the crucial changes that science as an established social institution and an epistemological enterprise is undergoing, the key one is the loss of its monopoly on the production of socially useful knowledge and gradual transformation into something new, which, due to institutional and cultural reasons, we continue to call ‘science’. We suppose that the most appropriate conceptualization of the new phenomenon, which is replacing science as an institution, is “technoscience”, since the technical component in scientific practices has now taken a dominant position and technology production has become more important than fundamental knowledge. Technoscience has at least two sources: 1) capitalization of scientific activity that has led to classical science has been replaced with technoscience developing on first-priority funded applied research; 2) theorization and autonomy of the techno sphere, which have resulted in instrumentalization of all levels of knowledge production as well as in technological / symbolic construction of reality and tangled ontology of technoscientific objects. We discuss both of these sources, with particular attention being paid to such trends as epistemic strategies transformation, modified reality, social sciences and humanities conformation to technoscience norms, and knowledge bearers egalitarianization. A crucial transformation of both science itself and its position in society breaks inevitably a demarcation line that separates scientific knowledge from other types of knowledge while promotes the replacement of scientific theory with discourses. Apparently, in “technoscience” an ethos of its own is being formed, where interaction with the “external environment” (with other social spheres) is crucial. In this context, scientific activity is becoming more and more transepistemic, transinstitutional practice, and accordingly ceases to be guided by the classical scientific ethos determined by the goals and objectives of academic community itself.

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